PhD Research Assistantship in Water Quality Modelling and Assessment in Irrigated Dairy Systems

University of Idaho at Moscow, Idaho
$25,000 per year stipend, tuition support and financial support to attend relevant confernences
Dec 30, 2020
Jan 29, 2021
Career Level
Student / Graduate
Education Level
Job Type
Relocation Cost
No Relocation
Sector Type

PhD Research Assistantship in Water Quality Modelling and Assessment in Irrigated Dairy Systems

Seeking a highly motivated and qualified student to explore the net impacts of the adoption of more efficient nutrient reuse and recycling technologies on nutrient stocks and flows at the farm and irrigation district scales using process-based modeling tools (e.g. the Integrated Farm System Model (IFSM) and the Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT)). The research will focus on the analysis of current and proposed integrative systems within the Magic Valley of southcentral Idaho. The dairy industry in Idaho has grown from eleventh to third in production by state in the past 25 years. Research will involve the evaluation and synthesis of water use and nutrient management within existing dairy systems and the application, parameterization and evaluation of model performance using historic water quality and quantity data collected from wells and irrigation return flows within the region throughout the last 25 years.  The position will be within a larger USDA Sustainable Agricultural Systems grant involving soil scientists, animal vet scientists, civil engineers, agronomists, sociologists, and economists entitled “Creating a new bioeconomy for dairies to increase nutrient recycling, enhance productivity of crops, & stimulate prosperity in rural America”. 

Qualifications: Applicants for the PhD position will have an undergraduate and MS graduate degree in hydrology, water resources, soils, agronomy, environmental chemistry, agricultural engineering, environmental engineering, or a related field. The successful candidate will be familiar with process-based modeling tools preferably SWAT, IFSM or related tool; analysis of large datasets using R or similar programming languages; water and nutrient cycling in soils; an understanding of dairy systems; GIS/remote sensing; basic statistics. The student is expected to have excellent verbal and written communication skills. We highly encourage motivated students eager to gain a deeper understanding integrated irrigated dairy systems and are willing to work interactively in team research to apply for this assistantship. 

Financial support: Each successful candidate will receive tuition support and $25,000 per year stipend, and financial support to participate to a relevant conference each year. 

Location: The research will be primarily conducted in Moscow, ID with the potential for extended summer to semester long residency in Twin Falls, ID region.

Timeline: Review of applicants will start immediately and continue until the position is filled. Starting dates can be flexible but preferable by fall semester 2021 or sooner. 

To apply: Please send the following materials to Erin Brooks at Personal statement, Curriculum Vitae, Unofficial transcripts, contact information of three references.

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